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Archive for December, 2012

We got Simon 2 years ago this coming February. He is part of the family—our family. He is still into things and that will never change. He still loves boxes and seems to want to fit into the smallest. I am legally his owner but my oldest daughter is his real “parent.” I can do everything for him but he shows allegiance to her. We think it is because he sees her as his equal 😀 . He will sleep next to me now and will sometimes get into my lap—not often but sometimes. He likes to sit on my pillow and just be close to me. Strange behavior for a cat who is a touch-me-not!

Simon

 

The mornings that I take a shower he goes with me and sits on HIS towel waiting for me to finish. The moisture helps his sinuses and believe it or not, he will wait patiently until I am through. We have come a long way since he first arrived 😀 ! I remember when he would not do this. But, he is still master of this house. All who have cats know what I mean by this. I truly do not know what we would have done without Simon this year. He has greatly touched our lives.

 

For Christmas, I got Simon one of those “mouses” that has a string. When pulled, it vibrates across the floor. He has gone through a few of these—the string comes out… And, believe it or not, he by himself, can pull the string by holding the mouse in his mouth and front paws and pulling the string with his back paws. Rather than take the mouse out of the packaging I just gave him the whole thing… Guess what. The mouse disappeared—I found him later in the living room…the mouse.

 

Simon loves puzzles—figuring out how things work. That is why he is so intrigued by water coming out of the faucet and going down the drain. He also likes to take steal my pencil and I joke about how he must want to write me a note to tell me what he wants. There are so many more things he does and we love him to death—like I said—he is part of the family…he IS family. Nothing is going to change that.

 

Simon says…Happy Scratching and may your day be as bright as his! Take care!!! 😀

 

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Do you ever wonder if you are in the right place doing the right thing? Do you question where you should be? I know where I should be. I am exactly where I should be doing what God wants me to do. Through everything I have been going through lately—all of the Job-like trials—it seemed like it would not stop. God had me walk a path…a path of physical pain and heartache. Then he had me watch as my children were hurt by their father time and again and I could not prevent it. Then they were hurt by his family and his “friend.” God didn’t wish this on me or the girls. He was teaching me and preparing me—actually all 3 of us. I knew it early on, at the time my husband left, but I had to go through it. I have talked about the tempering of steel in my blog before. A sword is carefully tempered to withstand the fiercest of battles—strength is the key.

 

A lady I know lost her husband early this year—Jan 5 to be exact. They were closer than two peas in a pod and had been married for so long—for over 50 years. He was sick for quite a while and she took care of his every need until he passed away. They were such a cute couple—never wanted to be away from the other. After he died, she literally broke down. She has missed him, his warm smile, his kind voice, his loving arms for so long.

 

I saw this lady in a store this past week. She attends my church and has watched me cry every Sunday during worship first because of the loss of my mate—not to death but to something other than God—and then tears of joy because I am so thankful for what I have—my children, friends, and my faith. She broke down crying in the store because she hurts for me but I told her that I don’t hurt anymore. Wow, did I really just say that? It is such a great feeling! She wanted to know why and how I got to this point. I said that I was healed. God healed me. She wants that. Losing a mate to his selfishness compared to losing a mate to death is not even in the same ballpark but there are similar situations on how to deal with loss no matter what it is. Not only can I help with that but there are others who observe how I can share with those who need. They are touched as they watch to see me give a piece of my heart each time and I grow even stronger. These are friends that have been so worried if I would find my way back.

 

As I talked to this lady, I felt I am here where I am supposed to be. I know it in my heart. A few months ago, God instructed me to follow my heart—that it would lead me to where I needed to be. This is it! This is where I am supposed to be. On the way home from the store, I asked my daughter if she could see a change in me. She said she had and that the biggest thing is that I am finally happy—really happy—genuinely so and that people can see it. She is right! I am. In a month’s time I have learned so much but in reality it has taken all of the time before to get here. It could not have happened sooner. I had to go through all of it. It is making me a better person, whole and complete.

 

I hope you find where you are supposed to be and where you are needed. And, please strive to have no missed opportunities along the way 😀 . May your gardens grow with extreme goodness and plenty of bounty!

 

Happy Gardening–always! 😀

 

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Friday marked more changes in my life. It began with an appointment at the cemetery—a beautiful one–100 years old this year which butts up against the Augusta Country Club and Augusta National where The Masters Tournament is played each year. I need a single plot—just for me unless I get married somewhere along the way but I don’t see that happening—or at least anytime soon.

 

I had a place in the family plot in Girard but we rarely go down there so I wanted to choose something in town. I buried my grandmother here some years ago so there is reason for me to be here. There were no places in the old beautiful section so I chose a place high on a hill looking down in all directions. A few trees are nearby. It is beautiful and quiet—so peaceful—and you can see both golf courses 😀 not that I am into golf that much but the greens are always immaculate.

 

Warning…. Graphic display of my skin–my apologies 🙂 

Next, it was off to get my tattoo!!!! And, yes, I have a tattoo!!!! This was taken later that night.

Tattoo

Not sure why people talk about pain but I see why people want to get more of them. I think I want a contrasting color later on to set it apart from my light skin and awful blood vessels. Thank you to the person who drew this design 😉 . Either people are very nice to me and say they like it or they really do. I am betting on the latter because most people are honest with me 😀 .

 

It was a good day. There are lots of changes and the biggest one is shedding the old and starting on a new path just in time for the New Year.

 

May you find peace and happiness in your gardening and may you always be blessed. Happy Gardening! 😀

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Testing

Yesterday was another round of testing for my circulation because I often turn blue and sometimes pass out. This time my arteries were being checked. Last time it was veins in my legs. Previously it was my heart, neck and arms. So far all I hear is that it is my AVM in my brain that is playing havoc with my circulation but that it is “ok.”

 

Ok. I arrive and the lady says that this will take about 3 hours… 😦 I am escorted to a room, told to strip off certain parts of clothing—not telling which parts, and was put on a gurney. Last time, it took quite a while to clean off all the lubricant from my legs. This time it was my legs and arms—yuck! Pressure points were checked and recorded. Things looked good. Then came the 100 blood pressure cuffs—ok, it wasn’t a 100 but it seemed like it…3 on each leg, and 2 on each arm—all at one time. I was told that tall people must have 3 on each arm—this is probably the first time I felt privileged to be short. There was at least one other test in here but I have forgotten what it was. Each cuff was inflated and circulation was checked. And, when these cuffs were inflated especially on my calves, I thought my legs were going to break—it felt that bad. She warned me it was going to hurt and it did. This took a while. Some other little things were done and then the fun tests began… — yeah, I was waiting for the fun to begin, too 😀 .

 

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The immersion tests… With Raynaud’s Syndrome/Disease people will have a tendency to turn color (usually blue or white) at the hint of cold. The lady put latex gloves on my feet—yeah gloves 😀 . Then I dipped my feet into freezing cold ice water with ice cubes. That lasted 3 minutes. It may not sound like a long time but once you get to the 2 minute mark, pain begins if you still have feeling. Then measurements are taken of each toe; a period of waiting, and then retaken. These two measurements are compared to see what types of changes there are in the capillaries. The same thing was repeated for my hands. By the way, once my feet ever get cold, it is almost impossible for me to get warm.

 

When I turn blue at times, I can see what seems to be almost every vein in my body similar to the bottom 2 photos but this is all over and worse in my right side. It is not quite as blue as the photo but sometimes my veins begin to look almost black. What were the results of the tests? I have no clue. I go back next week but I don’t think I have symptoms of Raynaud’s. My mother had it. Two fingers were amputated because of it and it can be inherited. I am concerned for my daughters more than concern for me. As for the blood tests taken back in October? I have called and called with no results. I go back mid-January. I wonder if I can find out then about those tests… and I never heard back about the ones done last July….. :/

 

Note:  Simon is still alive and well and into things as usual. He will begin making a reappearance in my blog 😀 . I know he has been missed!

 

Take care and Happy Gardening in all of your gardening plots! 😀

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I have so many great memories of Christmas on the farm. We were simple and celebrated very simply. Christmas was a cedar tree cut and dragged home from somewhere on the farm, old electric lights added, precious hand-blown ornaments that had been passed down through generations, even icicles that were reused each year… Christmas was also the best food I think existed, even Black Fruitcake—YUM! 😀 , and family that would gather around the big farm table.

 

MadonnaChristmas has always been very special to me and I have tried to pass that on. My paternal grandmother who died when I was 3 was the real lover of Christmas. It was her passion that was passed on to me through my dad, my mom, and great aunt. One year when I was a young teenager, I received the precious Madonna that belonged to my grandmother. Each year, I received something of hers for Christmas but this gift has been the most special. For years, I unwrapped her along with the carolers and cherubs to display on the Welsh Dresser my dad made years ago. When Christmas was over she went back into the box…that was until I decided that she should not be hidden 330 days of the year and is now enjoyed every day.

 

Christmas is lots of things to lots of people but to me it is the memories of Christmas past coupled with the memories of Christmas present that makes it so special. My passion for Christmas is not much different than that of my paternal grandmother. And, I hope that I have passed on much of her love of Christmas and what is truly important.

 

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

😀

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These are my babies. This was taken Easter 1992. The little one is the one who just had a birthday. Aren’t they adorable? These are the two best things I have ever had a part in. Aren’t they cute? 😀    Well, I think so but I am a little partial.

I scanned this photo when I was changing out frames and such this weekend and had to share this. I love my babies. 🙂

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Twenty three years ago today it was snowing here which is unusual to begin with. Two days before Christmas, a Saturday, and I could not sleep the night before just as a child waiting for Santa to deliver gifts. Every 15-20 minutes I checked to see how much snow had accumulated scared that the drive I was about to make that next morning would not happen. You know how it is in the southeast—salt and sand are not readily available and spreaders have to be leased to apply them to the roads.

 

It was my wedding day. Nothing fancy this time. Just flowers, rings, and a very nervous stomach, oh, and the bride and groom of course. I wasn’t going to write about this day or the meaning I have cherished all of these years and I am still not going to write about it. I have boxed up all of my wedding memories, photos, anniversary cards, gifts, mementos, everything is gone from sight, even the rings. I have anticipated this very painful day for a while. I am dealing with it in my own way.

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I need something to signify that I have made a change in my life and I am not going back. It is the start of a new life for me, but what could give me that permanent feeling of separation and newness of life? A tattoo and before anyone says anything, this is my decision. I have long said I would never get a tattoo. Ask the girls about the years I have spent telling them what the consequences are if you do.

 

I asked several people what they thought and I narrowed it down to these choices… a dolphin, a butterfly, a heart, a cross, or a flower—not a rose. I want something that will exemplify me—something that will show what is really important. Someone 😉 suggested a cross with a heart 😀 and if I get the artist’s permission, I will show it to you. It will appear on my front shoulder so that I will remember the change I am making. This symbolizes exactly who I am. It could not be more perfect. I wanted to get it done today but being it is Sunday it will wait until after Christmas. That is fine. This will show the step I am making as I start the New Year–2013.

 

People who see me out and about these days want to know what has changed in me. My heart has changed. I have really come home and I am ready to deal with what comes next. It is great to feel good inside. My faith is my solace, my strength, and my refuge. My heart is what ties them all together and leads me in the path that I need to go.

 

So as I close this blog post, there are no tears, no sad feelings because I look to the future, to God, and walk forward. May your day be blessed and your life be filled with eternal happiness!!!

Happy Gardening today and forever! 😀

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The Best Christmas Ever!

 

Christmas is coming—the day—25 DEC 2012. It has yet to arrive but it is the best Christmas ever! It is not filled with packages under the tree. My tree was just put up today. There are no ornaments but it is filled with love. I don’t have many things to give but there is so much. So, how can this Christmas that has yet to come be the best?

 

For years, I believed that Christmas was a feeling I would get in honor of the real meaning of Christmas. With the hustle and bustle and so much merchandising, that feeling was pushed to the back of my mind like a foreign memory. I was dreading this Christmas more than ever and people who have been reading my blog know exactly why, but guess what. This ONE is the best.

 

I cannot explain really. Something has happened. It is more than me giving of myself. It is more than knowing I have friends across the globe. It is more than I have ever had. I finally feel that I belong again—that I am worthy. I have been blessed not with just blessings but blessed with the gift of sharing God’s love. I can’t explain. It is in my infectious smile again—something that has been missing for a long time. It is in my touch. It is the way I see things.

 

For many friends and people who know me and who have been so worried about me, I give them the gift of answered prayer. I am ok. I really am ok!!! 😀 I still have problems and will have chasms to get through but I am ok. Christmas hasn’t arrived as far as the day, but Christmas has arrived in my heart! After all, I am a believer in celebrating Christmas every day of the year!

 

So, Merry Christmas today and every day!

 

May your day be blessed with love and your gardens with eternal goodness! Happy Gardening! 😀

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Dear Most Gracious God, Heavenly Father, and Blessed Savior, I come to You with heavy heart. Your mercy is abundant and more than I will ever fully understand. I seek not understanding but peace. I seek not retribution but love. I seek not vindication but hope for a better world and brighter tomorrow. I cannot put a face on evil because it lingers everywhere and not just in the hearts of a few lost souls. I cannot ask why because I know why. You do not promise a perfect world here and now. Bad things happen to good people and it will continue until You return. You do not wish bad things on us but when they happen we need to pull closer to You and not separate ourselves from You. You are our Joy, our Longing, our Love. You sustain us when all else is dark. You give us hope when the Light seems to be hidden. Help us to reach out to each other not separating ourselves from one another, not judging, and not seeking justice. We are fallen—each one of us. We cannot judge one another and we are no better than the other for we all bear sin. Help us to seek forgiveness for our sins, our misgivings, our spiritual lacking, and for rushing to judgment. Purify our hearts, cleanse our minds, and immerse our souls in the peace that only You can give. Let us not rise above one another but seek to be equal and shoulder responsibility for all mankind. May Your Love bind us to one another and help us to live within Your shadow. I pray this in Your Holy Name,

Amen.

 

This prayer was written in light of the tragedy of 14 DEC 2012 and the aftermath. It was to appear in My Letter to God (morningletters.wordpress.com) but will appear across all 4 of my wordpress blogs today… I have seen injustice not only in the deaths of precious children but by adults lashing out from all angles including nasty media coverage. Love is what God is about. Please embrace this as it is meant. We all fall short of God’s glory but through HIM we are made whole—each one of us. May your day be blessed and may we all thank God each and every day for our many blessings!

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You have no control of which family you are born into or the circumstances but after you are brought into the world is up to those who are your parents, grandparents and the like to care for you, protect you and love you.

Family - from Protect Your Heart  c 2012

Family – from “Protect Your Heart-Your Wife Is in There” c 2012

Those are the basic needs of each one of us no matter what family we are born into. I would argue that these are requirements to fulfill our duties as parents and only the least that we can do. Some will argue that once you reach 21, a parent is no longer responsible or needed. I disagree and believe that many times these are those moments when young adult children need their parents more than ever not as someone to lean on but to be there as a counselor.

 

For the past several months I have not believed what I have witnessed from my husband’s family and I use the term, husband AND family very loosely. I am not here to air my laundry but to call attention to what is happening more and more across the globe.

 

My youngest daughter who just turned 21 is making a break from the family—her father’s family. She went to visit them—her grandparents, step-siblings and all back during the summer. Her aunt was very rude to her and had nasty things to say. I should not expect any different. My daughter has also discovered that there were lies told to her over and over when she asked about her father to varying members. After his mistress contacted my daughter with threats and accusations last month—trying to manipulate her, my daughter had enough. She deleted all but one cousin from facebook. Then on my daughter’s birthday Sunday the aunt was the only one to re-request to be a friend. My daughter denied it—her prerogative. I said earlier—the girls have to make their decisions. You would think it might stop here but no…

 

My step-daughter has decided with the rest of the family to gang up on my daughter publicly on facebook. I really don’t understand people. The step-daughter did not mention my daughter by name but everyone knows who she is talking about. How childish and how cowardly to do this and not give her a chance to refute what the step-daughter has said. Now, I don’t know about the rest of the world but this is not family. Family cares for the other. I know many families who do not but I know families who have severe issues and still care in their way. This family doesn’t. Who does this? None of them read my blog. Too bad. They may learn something. 🙂

 

I have long disliked a lot about facebook for this very reason. Does anyone actually think that doing this to my daughter or to anyone else is going to bring about harmony, peace, make things better? People get caught up in the power they have with people liking what they say, cheering them on as they attack others. I have stood back and tried to take the high road for so long. I taught my children that people who do this type of stuff do not matter. It hurts me—immensely. After all the girls have been through and family didn’t reach out or anything, they are now attacking? My nightmare just became worse than a Stephen King novel—no insult to Mr. King. I can’t undo anything. I can’t make it better. I can’t make it right.

 

More than likely if you read my blog, you aren’t this type of person to begin with, but please let this serve as a reminder that no matter what is going on in our lives and how we see others, don’t attack them. I have a conscience. I like to be able to live with it and sleep at night. I know that I haven’t done anything to deserve this nor have my daughters. I could write a book about how people will attack what they see as the weak ones but are attacking because they see a threat. Don’t pick a fight. Choose to be good and treat others as you would desire.

 

May your day be blessed and your gardens yield only fine fruit, multiplying with exceeding goodness! Happy Gardening! 😀

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